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For week ended February 13, 2000 Posted 24 Feb 2001
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Summarized by Gregor McHardy

Women's tennis coach finds purpose at BYU
BYU NewsNet 8Feb00 P2
By Brandon Zinn: NewsNet Sports Writer

This article outlines how Craig Manning came to be an assistant coach on the women's tennis team at BYU. Manning was an Austrailian tennis pro who had tired of life on the road, the cost of playing in tournaments, and the pressure of professional sports. And even though he avoided sugar because he felt it was bad for his health, he had taken up drinking. One day, sick with hangover and depressed by his life, he played a pick-up match with an older man whom Manning thought an easy target. No luck. The man beat him, but noticed his talent, and suggested that he knew of a school where he could play tennis to pay for his college tuition, but the drinking and smoking would have to go.

So he arrived at BYU a little while later, but did not immediately feel at home. An illness he had contracted, and the inability of other BYU students to understand his brand of English got him down. It wasn't until four months after his arrival that he began to come home.

On the way to a tennis game with a friend, he blurted out a question that had been bothering him for some time: "Why do we do the things we do?", a question he had put to many people before, but had not yet recieved an acceptable answer. However, his BYU friend gave him an answer that kept them talking for five hours, and resulted in Manning's conversion to the Church two months later. Since then, Manning has played tennis for four years at BYU and has served as an assistant coach for four more.


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